| ORLANDO, Fla.
ORLANDO, Fla. Feb 22 A one-day ticket to the
Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World in Orlando jumped on Sunday
to $105 from $99, an increase that likely makes the Florida
family attraction the first in the industry to breach the $100
All other Walt Disney Co parks in Orlando and
California increased prices for one-day, one-park admission, but
they remained slightly below $100. Disneyland and Disney
California now cost $99 while Orlando's Epcot, Animal Kingdom
and Hollywood Studios cost $97. Taxes are extra for all tickets.
John Gerner, managing partner of Leisure Business Advisors,
said he was not surprised that Disney chose the Magic Kingdom to
test triple-digit pricing.
"In the minds of a lot of theme park enthusiasts,
especially those that love Disney, it is seen as being
essentially priceless," Gerner said.
Gerner said he knows of no other U.S. theme park with ticket
prices over $100.
Disney did not immediately return a call from Reuters but
provided a prepared statement to the Orlando Sentinel.
"A day at a Disney park is unlike any other in the world,
and there is strong demand for our attractions and
entertainment," spokesman Bryan Malenius wrote to the newspaper.
Gerner said it would be difficult to determine whether the
price increase would have an impact on attendance, given so many
other variables such as weather and the addition of new rides.
If the sting of triple-digit ticket prices pushes more
guests to seek a better value by choosing multi-day and resort
packages, the company will benefit from stronger hotel and
restaurant revenue. Those streams are more important to Disney's
bottom line than ticket revenue, Gerner said.
Typically, SeaWorld Orlando and Universal Orlando raise
prices soon after Disney, but both parks' prices have room to
grow before reaching $100.
One-day, one-park adult tickets to Universal are $96 while
SeaWorld tickets range from $70 for a weekday admission and $80
for any day, according to their websites.
Disney operates television networks including ABC and ESPN,
theme parks on three continents, a movie studio and gaming and
consumer products divisions.
The company blew past Wall Street estimates when it released
quarterly results earlier this month, driving its stock to
(Reporting By Frank McGurty; Editing by Ken Wills)